Construction nationale et revendications linguistiques en contexte minoritaire : le cas des Bunjevci de Bačka (Serbie)

Abstract : The Bunjevci are a small South Slavic ethnolinguistic group which lives in the Bačka region, in the north of the Province of Vojvodina in Serbia, as well as in the south of neighboring Hungary. Through a monographic and interdisciplinary approach, we try to contribute to the understanding of the complex relationship between language and (ethno)national identity in a minority context. According to the Serbian anthropologist M. Prelić (2007), the Bunjevci can be considered as a group "with controversial or disputed ethnic identity". Indeed, the question of their ethnonationality – especially their categorization vis-à-vis other South Slavic groups in the region, Croats and Serbs – has been the subject of debate for centuries, in political and scientific spheres. In the past, they were located on the periphery of various national integration movements (Hungarian, Serbian, Croatian, Yugoslavian) which tended to incorporate them. Today, although they are officially recognized as one of the many "national minorities" of Serbia, the Hungarian institutions formally deny them this status on the other side of the border. Their existence as a particular ethnonational entity is also explicitly contested by neighboring Croatia, as well as by the institutions of the Croatian national minority in Serbia, which perceive Bunjevci as Croats. Having obtained the status of "national minority" in the early 2000s, the Bunjevci of Serbia – or rather, the national activists representing them – begin a genuine process of national (re)construction in which a key role is assigned to the language. The "Bunjevac language" (bunjevački jezik), a štokavian ikavian variety (once considered as a local speech of the Serbo-Croatian language), is now placed at the center of the minority's claims and put forward as one of the elements ensuring the individuation of the Bunjevci from the Serbs and the Croats.
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Chloé Dubois. Construction nationale et revendications linguistiques en contexte minoritaire : le cas des Bunjevci de Bačka (Serbie). Linguistique. Université Grenoble Alpes, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016GREAL015⟩. ⟨tel-01692049⟩

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